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XGI Volari - Newest GPU on the Block
XGI Volari - Newest GPU on the Block - PCSTATS
Abstract: When XGI Technology announced the Volari line of graphics processors for the desktop and mobile market on September 15th, the collective response from the PC community was..."Wha...?"
Filed under: Video Cards Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: XGI Oct 23 2003   M. Dowler  
Home > Reviews > Video Cards > XGI Volari

Reactor Unified Driver

Every company these days seems to be putting out a unified driver for at least their newer lines of products, and why not? While a few years ago it might not have seemed so obvious to whack all your drivers together into one huge package, in the current era of practically universal broadband coverage, what's a few Megabytes extra compared with simplifying things for your customers?

XGI technology is sensibly going along with the trend and presenting the 'Reactor' unified driver for all Volari GPUs (except the XP5 mobile GPU, as it is derived from a separate technology.)

Conclusions and observations

There's a lot of promise in the Volari line. While some may find the idea of a new company instantly competing with the big boys of the graphics biz hard to take, the fact is that the company is composed of people who have been making graphics technology for a long time.

On the other hand, their pedigree as far as graphics for gamers are concerned is dubious. Neither SiS (despite the Xabre) or Trident were noted for having much (or any) impact on the games/enthusiast graphics market prior to this point.

Still, perhaps the formation of XGI signifies a renewed focus on conquering this difficult market. XGI recently released some 3Dmark 2003 benchmarks obtained on a 3Ghz Pentium 4 system with 512MB of DDR memory:

Volari Duo V8 ultra - 5500-5600 3D Marks
Volari Duo V5 Ultra - 4000+ 3D Marks
Volari V8 Series - 3000+ 3D Marks
Volari V5 Series - 2000+ 3D Marks
Volari V3 Series - 1000+ 3D Marks

Benchmarks shown at the 2003 Computex in Taiwan upheld these numbers, for the top of the line Duo cards anyhow, so things look very promising on this front.

XGI is claiming that their Dual-GPU model for the Duo range of cards will be the wave of the future, citing the increasing complexity of single GPU designs, with the attending increased costs and reduced yields.

If the Duo V8 Ultra makes a big enough splash, expect to see other manufacturers, especially Nvidia whose progress has fallen behind the curve of late, sit up and take notice. Volari-based products should begin to come onto market in late November of this year.

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Contents of Article: XGI Volari
 Pg 1.  XGI Volari - Newest GPU on the Block
 Pg 2.  The Volari product line
 Pg 3.  The Volari V8
 Pg 4.  Volari V3, BitFluent Architecture
 Pg 5.  The Volari Duo Series
 Pg 6.  BroadBahn Memory Architecture
 Pg 7.  CipherVideo and ColorAmp
 Pg 8.  — Reactor Unified Driver

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